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Paper 8 - 26 January 2001

ASSOCIATION OF HAMPSHIRE AND ISLE OF WIGHT LOCAL AUTHORITIES

26 January 2001

HAMPSHIRE FRAMEWORK FOR "SUPPORTING PEOPLE"

Report by the Policy Manager

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RECOMMENDATIONS

(1) That the broad framework for joint implementation of "Supporting People" between Hampshire County Council and the eleven District Councils be approved, subject to the need for each member authority to agree the proposals;

(2) That a joint Member/Officer Panel be established as described in paragraph 5; and

(3) That the Association nominates five District Members to serve on the Panel, at its Annual Meeting on 1 June.

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SUMMARY

"Supporting People" is a Government programme which brings together funding for people living in various types of supported housing. New "ring-fenced" Government funds, amounting to £0.3m in 2001/2002 are being allocated to Hampshire authorities for a development programme leading up to the planned implementation date for the new system in April 2003.

The new system, and the development programme, require collaboration between County and Districts. The Housing Officers Group, Social Services Department and Chief Executives’ Group have brokered a scheme which is currently being signed off by Members in each Hampshire authority.

This report recommends an overall management and review mechanism to ensure that Members "own" the somewhat complex arrangements which are intended to lead to a better quality of life and greater independence for vulnerable people.

1. Hampshire County Council has prepared the detailed proposals for "Supporting People" in Hampshire in close consultation with:

Housing Officers
Housing Providers
Portsmouth and Southampton City Councils
DETR

These proposals are shown in the Annex "Commissioning for Supporting People".

2. The Chief Executives’ Group has considered various options for implementation. Funds available to individual District Councils are in the region of £20,000 each (see Appendix 1 of the Annex). Put together with Social Services funding of £116,000, these funds give sufficient to implement the new system in a co-ordinated way and provide new staff - bringing in a new system - the chance to work together as a team and develop a successful process for implementation in 2003.

3. The aims have been:

* to achieve joint working, team support and co-ordination

* to provide direction from each District Council so that local arrangements work sensitively.

It is considered that for the year starting April 2001, six staff can be deployed across Hampshire, working for the District Councils in four basic groups:

North: Basingstoke and Deane, Hart, Rushmoor
Mid Hampshire: Test Valley, Winchester, East Hampshire
South West: New Forest, Eastleigh
South East: Fareham, Gosport and Havant

In subsequent years it is planned to move to a position where larger Districts such as New Forest have their own allocated "Supporting People" member of staff.

3. Funding is proposed to be centralised, with the County Council technically employing all the staff, but the District Councils having control over local arrangements.

4. It is proposed that a joint Member/Officer Steering Group be established to oversee implementation of "Supporting People" in Hampshire. This Steering Group would represent:

District Councils (5)
County Council (3)
Chief Executives (3)
Housing Officers (3)

With 11 representatives in total, it would be possible for each District to be represented. The Group would be purely advisory. Executive decision would remain with individual authorities. However the Steering Group would provide:

* an important "sounding board" for the County Supporting People Manager (see page 13 of the Annex, where the Steering Group is shown as the "County Core Group").

* a method for District Members to see that District Council aims are being achieved at Hampshire level.

NICK GOULDER
Policy Manager

Date: 11 January 2001
Annexes: 1 (hard copy available on request)
Contact: Nick Goulder - 023 8068 8431, E-mail hiowlang@hants.gov.uk

Last update: 22/01/2001
Author: Nick Goulder, Policy Manager

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